• LB Carson Wells

  • OLB/TE Dante Sparaco



Carson Wells is doing everything he can to get some attention, and he certainly did on Saturday night.

A 6-foot-3, 225-pound linebacker from South Sumter (Fla.) High School, Wells was one of the most impressive players at Colorado’s Under The Lights camp at Folsom Field.

“I did better than I expected I would,” he said. “The high altitude got me a little bit, but other than that, it was good.”

Wells said he has 15 offers at this point, but CU is the only Power 5 team on his list. He’s been recruited by Harvard, Yale, Army, Southern Mississippi and took a visit to the Air Force Academy on Friday with his parents. The family is here until Tuesday to explore the area.

“It’s beautiful out here,” he said. “It’s my first time out here seeing the mountains.”

Wells was one of the fastest players in the camp, and during drills, he drew special attention from CU defensive coordinator Jim Leavitt.

“He’s intense; I like that,” Wells said of Leavitt.

With only about 70 players in camp, the players got a lot more reps and personal instruction than they might have in other camps, and Wells seemed to take advantage.

Wells participated in Florida’s camp last week and said playing for the Gators would be his dream. He’s also planning to check out South Carolina’s camp. After visiting CU, however, Wells said he could definitely see himself playing for the Buffs.

“It feels like home here,” he said.

Sparaco works at TE

The first two players to commit to CU for the 2017 class – Cherry Creek teammates Dante Sparaco and Jonathan Van Diest – took part in Saturday’s camp.

Sparaco isn’t sure whether he will play outside linebacker or tight end at CU, but on Saturday he worked exclusively at tight end.

“I’ve always been offensive minded, so preferably I’d want to play offense,” he said.

As one of just two tight ends in the camp – along with Rangeview’s Alex Fragoso, a 2018 recruit – Sparaco got a lot of instruction from CU tight ends coach Gary Bernardi.

“It’s good to get coaching from him and know how he runs things, so I’ll just be that much quicker off the ball when I get up here in January,” Sparaco said. “I’ll be able to understand his lingo and how he runs drills and be that much ahead.”

Van Diest had a solid camp, too, and like Wells, showed off his speed. In fact, Wells was the only linebacker to beat Van Diest in sprints.

“I did this camp last year and this was one of my favorite camps,” he said. “(On Saturday), I really felt like I had a good connection with coach Leavitt.”

Receivers, DBs shine

The camp was loaded with good talent at receiver and defensive back.

Three receivers who stood out: Tyler Asemota (Sherman Oaks, Calif.), Ju-Wan Edgerton (Mesa Ridge High School) and Alijah Allen (Buena Park, Calif.).

Asemota is a 6-foot-3, 194-pound senior who doesn’t have an offer from CU yet, but does have offers from BYU, Fresno State, Hawaii, Montana, Oregon State and Wyoming. The 6-foot-1, 186-pound Edgerton and 6-foot-1, 170-pound Allen are both 2018 prospects. On Sunday, Allen and Buena Park teammate Devon Cooley, a 2018 receiver/DB, both tweeted that they received offers from CU after the camp.

Four-star safety Brandon McKinney from Orange, Calif., who has offers from more than half of the Pac-12, was among the biggest names at camp. Other defensive backs that played well: Robert Corner III (Buena Park, Calif.), Anfernee Gurley (Everett, Wash.), Darreon Moore (Kennewick, Wash.), Khalid Taylor (Sherman Oaks, Calif.) and Davion Thompson (North Mesquite, Tex.).


Pro style quarterback Austin Burton of West Orange, Fla., had a good camp. The 6-foot-3, 203-pounder has several offers, but not from CU at this point. … Ryder Anderson, a 6-foot-6, 226-pound defensive end from Katy, Tex., announced on Twitter that he got a scholarship offer from the Buffs during his visit. Anderson has a three-star rating from … Among the offensive linemen, three-star Ryan Nelson (Buena Park, Calif.) stood out and was given a scholarship offer during the camp, he said. The 6-foot-5, 270-pounder has close to 20 offers, including from most of the Pac-12. … Joshua Talbott, a three-star safety from Long Beach (Calif.) Poly High School, did not participate in the camp because of a knee injury. However, Talbott, who is also considering schools such as Oklahoma, Oregon and UCLA, said he loved his visit and was very impressed by CU’s facilities.

Contact staff writer Brian Howell at or